Live Events 1
Regional Championship

Event Info

Buy-in $10,000
Prize Pool $2,101,800
Players 226

Level Info

Level 29
Blinds 25,000 / 50,000
Ante 5,000

Seat 6: Mark Owens (270,000)

Mark Owens
Mark Owens

Mark Owens is from right here in the Chicago area, a graduate of the University of Illinois. He's a 38-year-old options trader who is finding some success chasing poker as a hobby. Owens finished in 60th place at the 2008 WSOP Main Event, notching his first six-figure score and his only one to date. That might be about to change today, however.

Owens has only played one previous Circuit event, cashing in one of the preliminaries here last week. He took some of that payday to enter a $200 Mega Satellite for this Regional Championship, and he's parlayed the seat he won there into a final table run today, and potentially, a coveted gold ring when it's all said and done.

It'll be a long climb for Owens, though; he begins play as one of the short stacks with 270,000 chips.

Tags: Mark Owens

Seat 5: Shannon Shorr (905,000)

Shannon Shorr
Shannon Shorr

Shannon Shorr is a 25-year-old pro from Birmingham, Alabama. Shorr was a baseball player in high school, but he turned down the opportunity to play collegiately in order to stay focused on poker. In May, he graduated from the University of Alabama with a degree in Business Management, returning to the felt to continue his successful career.

Shorr's breakout came when he was just 20 years old, coming home from Melbourne with a 4th-place showing in the 2006 Aussie Millions. That was good for $205,000, and he followed that up with a big $650,000 score at the Bellagio Cup a few month later. To date, he has more than $3.3 million in career earnings. He's still without a gold bracelet, though, coming tantalizingly close in 2008. He finished second in a $2,000 No-Limit Hold'em event that year to earn the largest payday of his 18 WSOP cashes.

Shorr begins play with 905,000 chips, well within stiking distance.

Tags: Shannon Shorr

Seat 4: Tony Hartmann (194,000)

Tony Hartmann
Tony Hartmann

You may not know about Tony Hartmann, but the guy’s got a record that dates back until 1993. Since then, Hartmann has amassed over $750,000 in career tournament winnings with his best year coming in 2006 when he won over $170,000.

Hartmann is from Minneapolis, Minnesota and has 11 WSOP cashes over his career. On the WSOP Circuit, Hartmann has yet to have a cash, but making this Regional Championship final table is a great way to start. Out of those 11 cashes at the WSOP, Hartmann has made a final table four different times. His largest WSOP score came in 2006 when he placed fourth in the $5,000 Pot-Limit Hold’em event for over $124,000. That’s also the closest he’s come to a bracelet with his other final tables resulting in fifth-, seventh- and sixth-place finishes.

Outside of WSOP events, Hartmann has cashes in many events including the World Poker Tour. His best WPT finish came in 2004 when he took sixth in the World Poker Open in Tunica for over $120,000. At the 2007 World Poker Open in Tunica, Hartmann won the $5,000 Pot-Limit Omaha event. He beat out Chad Brown heads up to take home $147,988 in first-place prize money.

If you ask Hartmann where he credits his success in the game, he’ll respond by naming two people. Those two are his wife and his mother.

Tags: Tony Hartmann

Seat 3: Jim Anderson (345,000)

Jim Anderson
Jim Anderson

Jim Anderson used to pour drinks before he stacked poker chips. Hailing from Wooster, Ohio, Anderson is a former bartender who cashed twice at this past summer’s WSOP in Las Vegas. He placed in the money in a $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em event and then finished 242nd in the Main Event for nearly $50,000.

In total, Anderson has over $54,000 in career tournament winnings and with this final table he’ll nearly double that as he’s guaranteed at least $48,615.

This year is the second year he’s played on the WSOP Circuit. In 2009, Anderson cashed in a preliminary event at the WSOP Circuit held in Southern Indiana. His second cash on the tour comes a year later and at the first-ever $10,000 Regional Championship. It looks like Anderson has made the right choice when he decided to turn to poker rather than tips. This televised final table will surely be a good test for him in his young poker career.

Tags: Jim Anderson

Seat 2: Dave "Doc" Sands (1,360,000)

Dave Sands
Dave Sands

Dave “Doc” Sands may not be that well known in the live poker realm just yet, but he’s beginning to make a big name for himself with the results he puts up. Sands holds over $240,000 in live tournament winnings including four cashes at this year’s WSOP. Add those to the other four WSOP cashes he’s had over his career and he’s up to eight.

The largest score on Sands’ record comes from a $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em event at the Series this past summer. He final tabled the event, finishing in eighth place for over $67,000. Back in 2007, Sands scored his only and largest live win when he took down the $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em event at the March Madness Hold’em Tournament held at Turning Stone. He won over $54,000 for his victory there.

Where Sands is mostly known is in the online poker world. Sands plays under the monikers ‘Doc Sands’, ‘SexSeen’ and ‘dsands25’ amongst a few others. Under those three online names, Sands has amasses himself nearly $2.5 million in career winnings. His largest cash came when he won FTOPS Event #10 on Full Tilt Poker in 2009 for $259,440. On average, Sands cashes for nearly $3,500 whenever he hits the money in an online tournament. That’s quite an amazing number if you consider how much lower the buy-ins are online compared to live events.

Prior to becoming a professional poker player, Sands worked in the Internet marketing business. He’s just 25 years old and hails from Bozeman, Montana although he now resides in Las Vegas, Nevada. Sands is also a member of the famed “Brunson Ten” – a small group of elite poker players hand picked by the godfather of poker himself, Doyle Brunson.

Tags: Dave Sands

Seat 1: Bernard Lee (401,000)

Bernard Lee
Bernard Lee

Bernard Lee is from Wayland, Massachusetts and holds nearly $1.5 million in career tournament winnings prior to this event. Making this final table, Lee is guaranteed at least $48,615 in prize money and that puts him over $1.5 million in career winnings. Winning the event would make him part of the $2-million club.

Back in February 2010, Lee was named as the official spokesperson for World Poker Tour-branded Poker Room at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket, Connecticut. When this announcement came, Lee was he first professional player to be sponsored by a major casino.

It’s fitting that Lee became the spokesperson for the casino he calls his home turf. Lee has won three major titles at Foxwoods. In November 2006, Lee won the $5,000 No-Limit Hold’em event at the World Poker Finals for $368,919. He then won the $2,000 No-Limit Hold’em event the following year at the World Poker Finals for $239,143. He third Foxwoods title came in October 2008 when he won the $600 No-Limit Hold’em Shootout at the World Poker Finals for just under $23,000.

Those wins are what Lee became most famous for in the poker world. Back in 2005, Lee had an extremely deep run in the World Series of Poker Main Event. He finished 13th out of 5,619 entrants for $400,000. He had another solid WSOP Main Event run this past summer, finishing 410th in the large field of 7,319 players to take home over $30,000. That finish came shortly after he placed 21st in a $1,5000 No-Limit Hold’em event at the Series for over $21,000. In total, Lee has four WSOP cashes.

On the WSOP Circuit tour, Lee has five cashes to make this one his sixth. In 2008, he final tabled the Council Bluffs Championship Event and got 4th. In 2010, he placed 11th in the Harrah’s St. Louis Championship Event in April. On this season’s tour, Lee took 10th in the first stop in Council Bluffs.

Outside of being a professional poker player and the official spokesperson for Foxwoods, Lee is the co-host for’s Inside Deal. The show offers an in-depth look at the poker world, featuring the biggest poker news going around and the biggest players in the game. Along with that, Lee hosts a poker radio show in New England called “The Bernard Lee Poker Show” and is a successful writer. He wrote a regular column for the Boston Herald newspaper and has also authored books. Needles to say, the Harvard University graduate has done quite well for himself in the poker industry.

Tags: Bernard Lee

Regional Championship
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